Varney Speed Lanes   Lockheed Orion 9        NC12225    (c/n  183)

                                     This particular airline was not, strictly speaking, a true descendant of Continental Air Lines, but I
                                     will include it here since there is a relationship.  Walter T. Varney had made several forays into the
                                     airline business.  In fact United Air Lines can trace its heritage to his Varney Air Lines, first  incorp-
                                     orated in 1926.  Anyway, in October 1931, after selling Varney Air Lines to United, Walter floated
                                     another company, Varney Air Service, providing scheduled operations between Los Angeles and
                                     San Francisco.  After Lockheed Orions had been purchased, the operating name was changed to
                                     Varney Speed Lanes.  Just to confuse the issue, some of its aircraft were painted "Varney Speed
                                     Lines".   In 1934 Varney formed the Southwest Division of the company (see next entry) in El Paso,
                                     Texas after winning the contract Air Mail bid from El Paso to Pueblo.  This operation was taken
                                     over by Varney's partner (his former lawyer) Louis H. Mueller.  Varney in the meantime folded the
                                     California operation and started up again in Mexico, where the Orions were re-registered in 1934.
                                     NC12225 became XA-BHC.  The photo above is from the William T. larkins collection, while
                                     my Lockheed-provided print below shows an oft published image.  I also found the nice color
                                     drawing of a Varney Orion (below) produced by a modellers' group. (If "WB" could please identify
                                     his/herself I would like to give credit).